Posts/March, 2010/

South Mission Bay and Coit Tower

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

Few photos were taken over the weekend due to bad weather. My father arrived for a surprise birthday for my uncle. On Sunday morning we went on a whistle-stop tour of the town from beach, to Indian lunch and the bustle of Powell St. That evening, we took the Caltrain for an hour and a half ride south to San Jose. My uncle was surprised. We feasted on food and topped it off with a rich chocolate cake and iced cream.

Bellies full and goodbyes said, we boarded the train to head back home.

Patchy paint job near Duboce Park.

A building on Steiner that both of my parents had set foot in their past.

Father and son. My awkward pose is due to the enormous camera bag.

Water fountains.

Executive beach chair.


Father walking towards sea wall.

Sale 50% All things expect tobbco.

Caltrains ready to head south.

On Tuesday, lady and the tramp headed out early in the morning to a sneak preview event at Adobe’s San Francisco headquarters. We signed NDAs, got name tags, and sat in an auditorium with fresh coffee and pastries. The presentations lasted two hours. Afterward, a fine lunch of salmon and not salmon was served.

The building was near a weird part of town called Mission Bay. Surrounded by highways and water, the area is a mixture of industry, new buildings, and vacant lots. I decided it would be fun to take a stroll down Mission Creek to take a look at the house “boats” docked there. It was fun. From the boats, we walked along the waterfront in South Mission Bay past all sorts of weird piers, warehouses, and enormous docked ships.

Underpass along the train tracks.

Tiled building along Mission Creek.

J. climbing over a fallen fence.


Mushrooms with fly.

House “boat”.

Dilapidated store on a pier of Mission Creek.

Empty stadium seats and an epic sky.

Large vessel.

No parking sign.

Unnecessary warning cones.

A massive Navy hospital ship in for repairs.

Fence with bell.

The ruins of old piers.

The walls of the dock, with crane.

Modern parking structure.

Abandoned cranes.

Bio diesel pump.

We hung a left at 20th St. and walked through an ancient looking industrial area that had both abandoned warehouses and functioning ones. No one seemed to pay us much attention, though one truck driver who had been trying to get his trailer through a tight squeeze asked us if we were the people he had talked to on the phone. If we had said yes, who knows what kind of adventure we could have had.

Decorative awning.

Warehouse windows.

More warehouse windows.

Safety stories board of an abandoned factory.

The hook.

No parking.


Rusted wall.

Oddly proportioned door.


On the tracks of the T-line train.

The towers of Mission Dolores.

That evening, we didn’t dilly-dally. After a bunch of botched attempts, we had acquired RAM SIMMS to install in J’s aging laptop. I was excited to go home and try installing them. After a few incorrect seatings, the computer was rolling in memory. From there, I took it to the heights of new operating system ecstasy!

On Wednesday, J. was meeting someone for a networking lunch (Note: she was not from Cisco Systems, Inc.). I was left to my own devices. We parted company, she towards organic salads and chowder, I towards a face full of pesto pizza squares from Golden Boy in North Beach.

After one slice, I wrapped my second to go. Joggers in their tight spandex suits passed me as I climbed Filbert St. Hill up to Coit Tower. I ate pizza during the climb, either appearing as superman or superglutton to the casual athletes looking my way.

Coit Tower as seen from Filbert.

Looking west from the hill.

Shaded trail, cooled by morning mist.

The droopy flowering shrub of Telegraph Hill.

The “crookediest” street in the city: Lombard.

Viewing platforms overlooking the bay.

Snow not falling on Bay Bridge behind cedars.

A friendly surprise left on someone’s windshield.

A secret garden off the wooden pedestrian steps of Filbert.

The wooden steps. No cars allowed.

Walking down the steps, my eyes were drawn upward by a cacophony of squawks. Above, around twenty green feral parrots were hanging out in the treetop. I had heard about these birds before but had never seen them. There’s a 2005 documentary by Judy Irving about the birds. According to the internet, the quiet pedestrian steps of Filbert are a common stomping ground. If you read it on the internet, it must be true.

Lost in the moment, I broke into rap:

I’m seeing birds
I’m seeing birds
Everybody see me ’cause I’m looking at birds
I’m seeing parrots
I’m seeing parrots
Take a good hard look at how I’m seeing parrots.

I’m looking at birds, and
Taking pictures of them, and
I got a weathered and cheap
Nikon D40, cam
I’m the king of Filbert
Looking at birds like parrots
If you’re not seeing birds,
then you better be watching ferrets.

In the tree were around twenty green parrots.

Two parrots grooming each other.

As soon as I started taking horrible quality photos of the winged beasts, rain started to fall. I walked briskly for shelter amongst the fortress-like and soulless brick buildings of Sansome St. Despite the foul weather, the fowl had put me in an excellent mood.

I popped open my chintzy umbrella and plowed into the rain to meet J. for coffee at the Ferry Building.

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